BRP Antonio Luna joins Indian Navy drill in West Philippine Sea
BRP Antonio Luna, the newly-acquired frigate of the Philippine Navy, joined the Maritime Partnership Exercise conducted by the Indian Navy in the West Philippine Sea on Monday.
Lt. Mark Louwie Ramos, Naval Forces West public affairs officer, said the exercise was participated by BRP Antonio Luna and the Indian Navy guided missile destroyer INS Ranvijay and guided missile corvette INS Kora.
"The two Indian Navy ships were met by BRP Antonio Luna somewhere on the northwestern coast off Palawan and together subsequently performed several operational maneuvers at sea which were part of the combined evolutions during the exercise," he said.
"Both navies were very much satisfied with the outcome of these interactions that focus on enhanced interoperability and collaboration," he added.
Ramos said in compliance with the prevailing pandemic guidelines the exercise was conducted in a contactless manner while the all necessary health and safety protocols were strictly observed.
"After the exercise, the Indian naval ships are scheduled to call at Manila Port for replenishment," he said.
Ramos said the "INS Ranvijay and INS Kora were deployed by the Indian Navy to improve maritime security coordination with partner nations such as the Philippines who have both enjoyed a long-standing friendly relationship for seventy-two years."
"Since 1998, regular visits by Indian navy vessels to the Philippines have highlighted the two maritime nation-states' defense cooperation," he said.
Recently, BRP Antonio Luna, currently assigned to the Naval Forces West under the AFP Western Command, also participated in the 19th Southeast Asia Maritime and Cooperation (SEACAT) 2021.
Col Antonio Mangoroban Jr, acting commander of Naval Forces West said "since her commissioning, the ship has been participating in regular drills with friendly foreign navies to improve the ship's professional capabilities and self-assurance in carrying out its mandate". Robina Asido/DMS